Brookfield
goes further and and states that good teachers should also go further and seek
advice and feedback from their peers – Our Colleagues ‘Experiences. Peer
assessment is not limited to just the children and is of importance to the
teaching faculty also. The fourth lens that fosters critically reflective
teaching is contained in scholarly literature on higher Education. In Summary,
Brookfield argues that to be an excellent teacher it is important to
continually attempt to shape teaching and learning environments into democratic
spaces of knowledge exchange

Brookfield
(2002) emphasises the importance of critical reflection in relation to
effective teaching. The aim of a critically reflective teacher, according to
Brookfield, is to develop an increased understanding of their teaching from as
many different vantage points as possible. He went further to suggest four
lenses that can be used in a process of critical reflection – the autobiographical,
the student’s eyes, our colleague’s experiences and theoretical literature. The
autobiographical lenses focus on the importance of self-reflection. Teachers
may focus on their previous experiences as a learner or on their experiences as
a teacher in order to “become aware of the paradigmatic assumptions and
instinctive reasonings that frame how we work” (p.30). The use of
questioning could be of benefit to the teacher to reflect on their own work. The
student’s eyes lense can be in the form of student self-evaluation, peer assessment,
student journals – All evident in artefact 2.

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Questioning
is an invaluable assessment technique that was utilised in Artefact 2.
Questioning is useful for both the teacher and the child. Teacher questioning
can assess the child’s knowledge and understanding of areas which enables them
to engage and foster the child’s future learning    assess. Children also use questions to aid there learning. (NCCA,
2007). Effective questioning is of crucial importance. The teacher must ensure
to model good questioning which in turn will help the children progress in relation
to asking good questions to foster their own learning (NCCA, 2007).  B

Peer
assessment is also evident throughout artefact 2. This is where peers evaluate
the products or the learning outcomes of others in their group. Peer assessment
can contribute to the students’ active participation and re?ection on the
learning process by questioning the learning of their peers.

Assessment,
according to Biggs and Tang (2007) encompasses a wide range of methods and
techniques. Throughout Artefact 2 many assessment methods were referred to.
Self-assessment is a formative method of assessment that has gained in
popularity in recent times. The children are directly involved in their own
assessment by analysing their own work in a reflective way, identifying areas
that could be improved on and setting personal learning goals (NCCA, 2007). Research
has illustrated how self-assessment can be used to encourage student
involvement, motivation, learning and responsibility. However, it is not
without its challenges. Despite the host of bene?ts and policies pertaining to
self-assessment, a review of the literature illustrates that students often
overestimate their abilities, whereby, their self assessments may only hold a
tenuous relationship with their actual academic performance (Sadler and Good,
2006). Gathering feedback from students can provide
valuable insight into teaching and learning. For Brookfield (2002), when
teachers reflect on their practice using the student lens they become more
responsive to the needs of students

On the
other hand, formative assessment is viewed as the antithesis of summative
assessment as it evolves around the needs of the classroom as a whole and is
modified and enhanced to fulfil the learning demands of each individual student
to ensure each student acquires a consummate and organic understanding of the
ideas and teachings being studied in the classroom. Formative assessment, being
perceptibly less rigid and obtuse than summative assessment, is unequivocally
more appropriate for the requirements of arts and physical education. For
assessment to be formative, teachers must identify individual students’
learning needs and adjust their teaching accordingly. Teachers and students are
interactively involved in the assessment process (Keane and Griffin, 2015). Gruber
(2008) argues that assessment in the visual arts must not be labour intensive
or intrusive but ongoing and linked to a learning objective. This is evident in
artefact 2.

Summative
assessment techniques would inhibit the learning process in lessons such as
those in Artefact 2 where co-ordinated group work and organisation and free
self-expression, without the need for robust assessment are paramount.

Collins
(2015) highlights two contrasting theories of assessment that are most commonly
used in Irish classrooms. Summative assessment is the traditional form of
assessment that most people are familiar with. It is characterized by
highly-pressurized end of term assessments and robust standardization which
emphasizes rote learning and do not advocate a deeper comprehension of the
material being studied while also impairing the necessity of self-assessment
and group work oriented projects which lend themselves to peer-to-peer learning
systems. Typically, a grade is the only feedback the student receives, leading
Black and William (1998) to conclude that summative assessment offers little
guidance on how work can actually be improved.  Dochy and Moerkerke (1997) state that
traditional testing methods go against the aims of long term learning, effective
thinking, critical analyse, self assessment and problem-solving skills.

The
NCCA’s guidelines on assessment focus on two principal approaches to assessment
– assessment for learning (AFL) and assessment of learning (AOL). AOL is where
the teacher periodically monitors an individual’s progress and standard achieved.
This is usually done with the purpose of reporting to parents, teachers and
other relevant parties (NCCA, 2007).  On the other hand, in AFL, the teacher uses
evidence on an ongoing basis to inform teaching and learning (NCCA, 2007). Unlike AOL, the student is
involved in the assessment process. Participation from the student provides the
teacher with an insight into the students’ progress and it helps to identify
the learner’s individual motivation and needs. AFL is predominantly used in
this artefact.

Assessment is an integral
part in the inclusive primary classroom. Assessment ensures that the primary
curriculum is accessible to all.  Assessment
is defined by Aistear as the ‘on-going process of collecting, documenting,
reflecting on, and using information to develop rich portraits of children as
learners in order to support and enhance their future learning’ (NCCA, 2009,
p.72). Assessment is a key area of learning and
development. It aids both students and teachers. Assessment is designed to
build a clear picture of a child’s progress and/or achievement in learning
across the Primary School Curriculum generally over a period.  It helps both parties determine the level of
understanding in relation to course material and it also plays a crucial role
in relation to the inclusive primary school. Assessment is an invaluable tool
for teachers as it helps determine the learning needs of the child. Effective
assessment should enhance and support the successful inclusion of all children who
are potentially vulnerable to be excluded, including those with SEN. NCSE
(2011, p109) states ‘Inclusive assessment provides meaningful experiences and
feedback to pupils and parents/guardians and is age and curriculum appropriate’

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